REFLECTION: SAGRA DEI CROTTI (CHIAVENNA, ITALY)

At exactly around this time last year, my good friend Davide told me that he was “going to the mountains to eat a lot of food.” Once he said those 10 beautiful words, he had no choice other than to bring me and (my then colleague, now best friend) Domenique to the mountain with him.

We had no clue why we were going to the mountain area other than to eat food, and to be honest… that was reason enough for us. We drove away from the Formula 1 madness in Monza and arrived in Chiavenna a couple hours later (after singing the YMCA multiple, multiple times… don’t sing near Domenique, she’s like a broken record). When we arrived in Chiavenna, we noticed a lot of signs that said SAGRA DEI CROTTI and being the curious person that I am… I inquired.

Sagra means festival and Crotti refers to “a natural cavity typical of mountainous regions of Lombardy and Swiss Alps, in particular areas of Lake Como , the Valchiavenna and the Canton Ticino.” Thanks as always, Wikipedia! But what does SAGRA DEI CROTTI mean?? Will be there be a ferris wheel??

SAGRA DEI CROTTI is a festival that has been hosted by the town of Chiavenna since 1956, during the second weekend of every September. The festival attracts 30,000 people from Italy and abroad… Davide (Italian), Domenique (English) and me (American) being the 1/10,000th.

Tradition: Bring a cup and the locals fill it with wine! Has anyone done this before? I didn’t have a cup last visit ;) Let me know!

To begin this culinary journey, we met up with 12 of Davide’s closest friends (they seriously migrate in packs here LOL) and began the trek to the Crotta! Enjoy the food journey ahead, I surely did <3

Driving past Lecco Lake!

 

Taking a break from the YMCA!

Walking through the Center of Chiavenna filled with Local Markets

Enter the Crotta!

Come in, don

Chiavenna is known for Bresoala, dry-cured beef (the beef version of prosciutto)

Antipasti: Picked Veggies

Fresh Ricotta: Add Pepper and Olive Oil... YUMMO!

Cured Meat Platter

Roasted Potatoes

Sausage Links

Polenta

Gnocchi

Chiavenna Wine

Traditional Cookies

Grappa (Potent Alcohol) to finish off the meal!

A certain someone did not like the Grappa LOL

View from nearby Restaurant Belvedere

In the waterfall!

All 15 of us infront of the waterfall <3"

Goodbye Chiavenna, thank you for hosting us in 2010, hope to come back soon =)

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